Monday, April 21, 2014

Some Stories Bear Repeating - M. Laycock

“I will come again, tomorrow,” Iya repeated. I nodded once again and told him we would continue his English lesson then. We chatted for another few moments, then he repeated the same words again, pronouncing the Melanesian pidgin slowly to make sure I understood. Again I acknowledged that I did. But just before going out the door, Iya turned and said, again, “I will come again tomorrow.”

Later that afternoon I spoke with my neighbour, who had lived in Papua New Guinea for some time. I mentioned the fact that I was sure Iya thought I was a little slow. “He repeats everything at least once, sometimes more, even when I tell him I understand.”

Donna smiled and nodded. “Don’t take it personally,” she said, “it’s the way they speak. Remember, this is an oral culture, and the language lessons are very important to Iya. To him, anything that is important bears repeating several times.”   

I thought of that conversation as I sat listening to a preacher on Good Friday. Though I came to Christ late in life, I realized I have heard this same story over and over again many times. The facts never change, the characters are always the same and the climax of the story is well known.

So why do we keep repeating it?

The answer of course, is that it is one of the most important stories we will ever hear. The details of Easter outline the salvation of the world, as well as our personal way to eternal life. It’s a story that bears repeating, a story that resonates deeply in the heart of every believer no matter how old it is, no matter how many times we hear it.

Perhaps that’s why, on that Good Friday morning, I found myself moved to tears once again by the mercy of a sinless God who took my sin on Himself so that I could stand before His Father, clothed with the righteousness of Christ. That’s the only way I can stand before Him, because my sin cannot be blotted out any other way.

Yes, it’s a story that bears repeating, in those same words and in any other words we can think of that will illustrate it. Because it’s important. Because it’s life-changing. Because it’s life-giving.

“Since we have that same spirit of faith, we also believe and therefore speak, because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you to himself. All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more peo;le may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.” (2Cor. 4:13 -15).
Marcia Lee Laycock writes from central Alberta Canada where she is a pastor's wife and mother of three adult daughters. She was the winner of The Best New Canadian Christian Author Award for her novel, One Smooth Stone. Her second novel, A Tumbled Stone was recently short listed in the contemporary fiction category of The Word Awards. Marcia also has two devotional books in print. Her work has been endorsed by Sigmund Brouwer, Janette Oke, Phil Callaway and Mark Buchanan. Abundant Rain, an ebook devotional for writers can be downloaded here. Visit Marcia’s Website



Peter Black said...

Marcia, your anecdotal intro story about the Melanesian repetition of important matters prompted my recollection of Philip P. Bliss' hymn lines "Sing them over again to me, Wonderful words of life..."
I read over and meditate on the Palm Sunday, Holy Week and Passion and Resurrection narratives in all four Gospels each Lenten / Easter season -- and never tire of them.
Thank you for sharing your fresh heartfelt response to the "Greatest story ever told"! ~~+~~

Glynis said...

Ah, Good Friday - definitely a story that bears repeating. Thanks for the reminder, Marcia and I, too, was moved to tears this past Good Friday. . .

Tracy Krauss said...

its a story that is never old!

Eleanor Shepherd said...

Thank you Marcia for reminding us of the value of repeating the important truths of our faith I especially need that as a pastor when I sometimes think that I have to keep coming up with something new. There is always a newness in the story as the Spirit applies it to our lives where we are today

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